St. Ann's Warehouse Presents KATE TEMPEST, Now thru 1/19
St. Ann's Warehouse will present the American Premiere of Kate Tempest's Brand New Ancients, which garnered considerable critical acclaim and the prestigious Herald Angel Award at this year's Edinburgh Festival Fringe. Tempest is also the first winner under 40 of the TEd Hughes Poetry Award. Brand New Ancients, which will run from today, January 10 - 19, continues the St Ann's Warehouse tradition of introducing American audiences to exceptional theater artists and companies from across the pond, including Kneehigh, Enda Walsh, Stephen Hoggett, John Tiffany, and Daniel Kitson, who first recommended Tempest to St. Ann's Artistic Director, Susan Feldman. A co-production with Battersea Arts Centre on Tour, Brand New Ancients will run for eight performances at St. Ann's Warehouse in DUMBO (29 Jay Street, Brooklyn).
Performances will take place today, January 10-11, 15-18 at 8pm; and January 12 at 5pm and January 19 at 7pm. Tickets start at $20 and are available today to St. Ann's Warehouse Members. The general public can purchase tickets beginning Thursday, November 21 online at www.stannswarehouse.org; by phone at 718.254.8779 (Tue-Sat, 1pm-7pm) or866.811.4111 (Mon-Fri, 9am-9pm; Sat and Sun, 10am-6pm); and in person at the St. Ann's Warehouse Box Office at 29 Jay Street in DUMBO, Brooklyn (Tue-Sat, 1pm-7pm).
Self-described as "a wayward youth living in squats, hanging around on picket lines, rapping at riot cops and on the night bus home" to South-East London, Kate Tempest celebrates the divine in ordinary people and everyday life. They are the "Brand New Ancients" she intones in her story of two families, subtly intermingled through generations, in language, music and song. Being brave, she challenges us to be brave; Brand New Ancients is a call to arms for a modern day hero, and the gods are closer than we think.
Kate Tempest's unique performance style blurs the lines between poetry, theater and live music, using hip-hop-infused rhythms and rhymes to weave an epic performance poem in a soulful style all her own. In Brand New Ancients, a live quartet-Raven Bush on violin, Natasha Zielazinski on cello, Jo Gibson on tuba and Kwake Bass on percussion and electronics-accompanies her to an emotive soundtrack by Nell Catchpole to underscore the victories and defeats of her everyday heroes. Jerusalem director Ian Rickson provided directorial support.
Reviewing Brand New Ancients at the Traverse Theatre during this year's Edinburgh Festival Fringe, The Scotsman called it "a torrent of poetry so brilliant that the words often seem to glow and smoke with intensity, as the narrative unfolds, the detail grows richer, and the backbeat of thought and reflection takes on new shapes and forms, reflected in the superb accompanying music." The Guardian has said of the performance, "Suddenly it feels as if we are not in a theatre but a church... gathered around a hearth, hearing the age-old stories that help us make sense of our lives. We're given the sense that what we are watching is something sacred."
The Huffington Post has said, "Seeing Kate live for the first time is unforgettable. [Her performance] was blistering, breathtaking...By the end [the audience]... were either stunned into silence or adding to the roar of applause. It is without a doubt one of the most exhilarating, inspiring pieces of theatre you'll see this year."
Brand New Ancients comes to St. Ann's Warehouse amidst a tour of London's most prestigious venues including The Royal Court Theatre, the Young Vic, Southbank Centre, Royal Opera House, the Lyric Hammersmith and others.
Brand New Ancients is a Kate Tempest and Battersea Arts Centre co-production, co-commissioned by the Albany and supported by the British Council.
About Kate Tempest
Kate Tempest grew up in South East London, where she still lives. Starting out as a rapper, she toured the spoken word circuit for a number of years, and now works as a poet and playwright. Her work includes Balance, her first album with her band Sound of Rum; Everything Speaks in its Own Way, a collection of poems with a CD and DVD of a live performance; GlassHouse, a play for Cardboard Citizens; and the plays Wasted and Hopelessly Devoted for Paines Plough. She is currently working on a new collection of poems to be published by Picador, a novel, music collaborations with producer duo letthemusicplay, and a new solo record with music producer Dan Carey. Kate Tempest is the first person under 40 to win the TEd Hughes Poetry Award in 2013.
About St. Ann's Warehouse
For over three decades, St. Ann's has commissioned, produced and presented an eclectic body of innovative theater and concert presentations that meet at the intersection of theater and rock and roll. Since 2001, the organization has helped vitalize the emerging Brooklyn waterfront neighborhood, DUMBO, where St. Ann's Warehouse has become one of New York City's most important and compelling live performance destinations. After twelve years at 38 Water Street, St. Ann's has activated a new warehouse at 29 Jay, where the organization will present performances while it develops its first permanent home, a year-round performing arts facility and community hub in the historic Tobacco Warehouse in Brooklyn Bridge Park.
Through its signature multi-artist concerts and groundbreaking music/theater collaborations, St. Ann's Warehouse has become the artistic home for the American avant-garde, international companies of stature and award-winning emerging artists. Highly acclaimed landmark productions include Lou Reed's and John Cale's Songs for 'Drella; Marianne Faithfull's Seven Deadly Sins; Artistic Director Susan Feldman's Band in Berlin; Charlie Kaufman and the Coen Brothers' Theater of the New Ear; The Royal Court Theater's 4:48 Psychosis; The Globe Theatre of London's Measure for Measure; Druid Ireland's The Walworth Farce, The New Electric Ballroom and Penelope by Enda Walsh; Walsh's Misterman, featuring Cillian Murphy; Lou Reed's Berlin; the National Theatre of Scotland's acclaimed Black Watch; Kneehigh Theatre's Brief Encounter and The Wild Bride; Yael Farber's Mies Julie; Dmitry Krymov Lab's Opus No. 7 and the Donmar Warehouse all-female Julius Caesar. St. Ann's has championed such artists as Jeff Buckley, The Wooster Group, Mabou Mines, Cynthia Hopkins, Enda Walsh, Emma Rice, Daniel Kramer and Daniel Kitson.
St. Ann's Warehouse has been awarded the Ross Wetzsteon OBIE Award for the development of new work. The OBIE Award Committee honored St. Ann's for "inviting artists to treat their cavernous DUMBO space as both an inspiring laboratory and a sleek venue where its super-informed audience charges the atmosphere with hip vitality."